Report: West 2-5 Hyde United

Tuesday 23rd November 2021, Manchester Premier Cup quarter-final

West 2 (Heathcote pen 51, Swift 76)
Hyde United 5 (Mitchell 30, 60, 69, Pratt 66, Fagbola 63)
Att: 321

West exited the Manchester Premier Cup at the hands of a strong Hyde United side.

The Northern Premier League Tigers led at the interval through Jonah Mitchell, and though Sam Heathcote’s penalty briefly restored parity, the visitors took control with four goals in a crushing nine-minute spell. A spectacular Joel Swift strike with 14 minutes remaining, his first at Brookburn Road, proved to be a mere consolation.

With one eye on Saturday’s league visit to Brocton, Chris Rowley again chose to shuffle his pack for county cup duties and and also handed a debut to new signing Harry Cain. The number 10 was at the centre of a series of neat moves as West started brightly, but their best chance of the half came through a scramble – Cain, Swift and Aarron Grewal all denied as they tried to force the ball over the line.

Hyde began to exert their authority, however, and it was no surprise when Mitchell opened the scoring. Andrew Jones had already made a string of saves, but was powerless to stop a fierce low drive inside the near post.

It was then West’s turn to survive a goalmouth fracas as the Tigers turned up the heat, but the home side were able to go into the interval with just a single-goal deficit. And that looked like it may have been crucial five minutes after the restart, when Swift was upended in the box and Heathcote levelled the scores from the spot.

But in the blink of an eye, the complexion of the game had changed completely. Mitchell tapped Hyde back ahead after Jones parried a shot, before West’s evening began to unravel. Josh Tinker was dismissed after being ruled to have denied a goalscoring opportunity, before Jordan Fagbola converted the resulting set-piece. Tom Pratt and Mitchell added further goals, and nine minutes after equalising, West were staring at the prospect of a heavy defeat.

There was something of a silver lining as the game approached the final quarter of an hour – Swift collected the ball inside the Hyde half and was rewarded for another tireless effort when his long-range shot sailed beyond visiting keeper Joe Green’s grasp and into the top corner.

West: A. Jones, Hancock (C. Jones 67), Westall, Delaney, Tinker, Heathcote (Cook 71), Grewal (Matthews 67), Graham, Swift, Cain, Eme. Not used: Gavin, Elliott.

Eckersley’s Plumbers & Locksmiths Player of the Match: Joel Swift.

Chris Rowley post-match reaction